Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Salesforce1 Platform - A Short Overview

Few days back Salesforce.com, a leading On-Demand CRM provider, announced its new Salesforce 1 Platform. With CRM as a core offering, Offering platform which will help businesses to make their company as Customer Company.

Now What does Customer Company Means?
With Salesforce1, Your business would be :
  1. Customer First
  2. Customer Driven
  3. Customer Centric
  4. Customer Focused
  5. Customer Trusted
  6. Customer Company

 With salesforce1, you connect your Customers, Employees, Partners and Product, It makes you connect with customers in a whole new way, a Mobile way, anywhere anytime. 

With Mobile Strategy, Salesforce1 is introduced as an mobile container to create an mobile application for your own purpose.

Sales Cloud :- Sales From Anywhere with Salesforce1
  • Assign tasks while you are travelling
  • Add opportunities while waiting at launge
  • Create new leads in Parties/Meetups
  • Submit forecast on your way back to office
  • Everything accessible from mobile device
  • Create contacts on the Go.

Service Cloud : - Service and Engage faster with Salesforce1
  • Always on Customer
  • Manage cases from anywhere anytime
  • Collaborate with Customers
  • scheduling followup tasks

Salesforce Admin App :- No Desk & Assist from Anywhere
  • Remotely reset password
  • Deactivate users
  • Know about Maintenance updates

Now with Salesforce1, You can add functionality in your Mobile App in few hours. Instead of spending few thousands/million dollars into creating an Mobile Application for your Organization, Use Salesforce1. To Download, Click Here. Its great application built by Salesforce.

Also Read my Post about Salesforce Marketing Cloud :

Monday, November 25, 2013

So The Question Was...About Connecting The Dots

If you want to draw a circle by Hand...

How many dots one should put, before connecting these dots with lines, to draw a circle?

And My answer was zero. well the answer was  wrong cardinally, there is some ordinal aspect to this problem which I would like to write about here.

... I will write sometime, Its philosophy, Its Irrationality, Its Art and Its Science.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Salesforce 1 - Marketing Cloud Explained

Mark Benioff, the CEO, Co-Founder of Salesforce.com, a leader in On-Demand CRM platform unleashed its New Look platform Salesforce1 in its annual conference Dreamforce'13.  Being connected with Salesforce since last 3 years, I am closely tracking how Salesforce is evolving. Considering Current Buzz of Cloud and Mobile (Smartphones, more precisely), Salesforce has taken big jump with Salesforce1.

This year I didn't go to dreamforce, but Last year I experience this big Party. I attended live presentation by Mark Benioff. It was great. This year, I opted out but I watched  keynote on Youtube. It was great show putup by Mark. I was quite impressed by use cases they presented.

Have a look at this must watch video, You can take it as a Benchmark about how to create an intro video of new product. Also I was impressed by the intro video they have prepared for Salesfoce1.

The Salesforce1 Platform brings together Force.com, Heroku, and ExactTarget into one family of cloud services — all built API first — to help deliver apps that connect products, users, and next generation experiences. Designed for scale and speed, it provides a fast way to build apps with open APIs, back-end services, integration tools, starter templates as well as powerful developer environments; there’s no limit to what you can build.  - Salesforce Developer Website

Its Amazing!

I took some time to understand the new look Marketing Cloud which is now rebranded as ExactTarget Marketing Cloud or ExactTarget Fuel.  For a newbee or first look, Marketing cloud will overwhelm you and additionally all the content salesforce has put up on their website won't give much details. Additionally some links are broken yet.

Here I will try to explain Marketing cloud from layman perspective. Marketing cloud has been built up by several acquisitions SF did in last two years. They are building this cloud offering using acquired companies as Lego blocks.

ExactTarget - Email, Mobile, SMS
     Salesforce acquired ExactTarget for $2.5 billion just 4 months back and It has taken centerstage for SF marketing cloud. And It has to as it was already boasting of 6000 of Enterprise customers including big names like Coca cola, Gap, Nike.
The dramatic increase in consumer and business use of social networks, mobile devices and new digital technologies is causing a revolution in marketing, as budgets previously spent on traditional media are now moving to digital campaigns. Gartner estimates that by 2015 consumer technology companies will have switched one-third of their traditional marketing budgets to digital*, and CMOs will outspend CIOs on information technology by 2017**. - SF Press Release,SAN FRANCISCO—July 12, 2013
As this integration has happened just 4 months prior to big announcements, It doesn't come as a something which follows salesforce platform philosophy and have tools like Apex and Visualforce providing customisations to it. but As Salesforce is projecting its platform as more of Data API oriented more of moving on from SAAS to be a BAAS player.
ExactTarget basically provide you more richer Email, SMS/Mobile Marketing. Its going to plug a biggest hole in the Salesforce platform.

Buddy Media - Social media Marketing & Analytics
Mark has a knack of identifying or aligning opportunities, He seems to have clearly  able to relate growing Social clout with enterprise world. Instead of boasting about its own existing offering, he seems to have gone ahead bravely to adopt futuristic things. Buddy Media acquisition decision was one of them. Salesforce.com closed on its $745 million acquisition of Buddy Media in August 2012. It also occupied centre stage along with Radian 6 in Dreamforce 2012.
Buddy media basically provide business to manage social media marketing and Analytics.

Radian 6 - Listen, Monitor, Engage
Salesforce.com acquired Radian6 in 2010 for $326 million, it also added social connections on main platform. but It didn't make any impact as such in a broader way.  But with all the dots connecting, It will definitely a great value add to salesforce platform.
Businesses can use radian6 to listen, monitor and engage on social media. Its kind of beautiful software which enables Marketing team and Primarily Customer Support and service team to use social media effectively.

Social.com - Advertizing on FB and Twitter
Social channel is becoming quite popular for digital advertising as it gives you access to identities and profiles for better targeting. Same thing is not possible in google search or google adwords.
Facebook and Twitter are strengthening their Advertizing offerings, It was good time for Salesforce to jump into it. As Marketing team have to spend budgets on Social Advertizing and if they can do it under same umbrella it would be quite good. They have launched it in April 2013. Its not something which they have acquired.

IGoDigital - Personalized Product Suggestions, Data and Predictive Analytics
IGoDigital was acquisition was not Salesforce brainchild, ExactTarget with keeping in mind Marketing needs of Ecommerce players acquired I Go Digital. With Tremendous growth in Ecommerce, lots of small merchants coming on to internet to do business. ExactTarget acquired IGoDigital, Its personalization technology, the expanded predictive analytics capabilities will enable marketers to leverage predictive product recommendations and content to create personalized experiences throughout the customer lifecycle.

Pardot - Marketing Automation
Messaging is a major part of Marketing. Messaging need to be done on various actions and through various channels. It can't be done manually in efficient way. Again Pardot acquisition is not Salesforce action, ExactTarget acquired it in Oct 2012. Pardot is one of the fewer companies which are providing Marketing Automation for almost all the channels, reducing manual interventions and letting marketing teams to think more on Business alignments and Creations.

ExactTarget Fuel powers multi-channel marketing programs for many of the world’s top brands. Fuel is an integrated collection of platform technologies that is open to third-party development, enabling you to build upon, extend, and integrate with ExactTarget’s digital marketing products.

Fuel includes:

APIs: Automate email campaigns, seamlessly integrate marketing, analytics, and other business software, and build Marketing Cloud applications.

SDKs: Use native platform and language constructs to integrate with ExactTarget including Java, .NET, PHP, Python and Ruby.

Fuel UX: Build apps the deeply integrate with the ExactTarget Marketing Cloud using familiar JavaScript technologies.

Fuel Cloud Editor: Easily embed world-class content creation in your Marketing Cloud or stand-alone app.


Now with all the lego blocks available, They have put together a marketing cloud but as of now customers can't buy all these in a single pack. As of Now, What I see from individual product websites, they have listed their pricing separately. With ExactTarget just 4 months into Salesforce Cloud, It will take Product Managers enough time to offer all these product under single umbrella with competitive pricing. Otherwise they will stay separated. I also guess as almost all the products are sharing social component, they would be having repetition of features. Salesforce PM team will need to put significant effort in packaging.

Read my Other Post about Salesforce1 Platform - http://sandipmore.blogspot.in/2013/11/dont-build-mobile-app-for-your-business.html

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Idea - Predictive Content Editor for Creative Writing

Img src : Wikipedia

I write blogs, mainly for myself. I write blogs when I am stuck with some thoughts which spins round and round and takes me to another world. Writing blogs and writing it in diary, is one of the easiest escape path to come out of that merry-go-round which sometimes make things un-merry e.g. Ideas can change the world buts also can disrupt your sleep too. So random writing doesn't eat up much of effort but since last few days where I am trying to write by thinking of new ideas, Its sometime turning out to be very difficult, may demotivate you to putting a fullstop on writing tasks you want to take up or has taken up.

Prime problem I do face while writing creative stuff:
1) Getting right Ideas
2) Getting right words to express your thoughts and feelings
3) Finding right references to validate your ideas.
4) Sometime  your editor or blogger for e.g. demotivate one due to its oveall UX/UI design

My musings is that, Is there any intelligent editor exists which help me in finding out correct words, will prompt me the  links to other articles while I write my Ideas/thoughts.

It should do search in background automatically and suggest me the links to the references of relevant/similar stuff. It will be helpful for bloggers who are writing for earning money from blogs.

    If intelligent tool can show a web analytics about probable page rank or popularity of topic on which you are writing on, it would pump extra energy into writing.

If it can suggest me replacement of words with better words which will automatically help me improve my english vocabulary and help me improve my writing.

Recently I came across one very good online blogging software Medium.com, its clean in terms of UI/UX. It would really help if Medium creators make it more intelligent.

I will add some more ideas about this intelligent editor, If anyone knows about some advanced online writing tool can comment about the same on this post.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Pune City :- Water Supply And Drainage System Study (Republish)

Standing on 11th floor balcony in Nanded City,  I was watching construction of Water Tower, It got my brain ticking about the why they do build Water towers and How do they work?

I did research on internet about it and got the Answers, then next question was how many water towers are there in Pune. Are they enough for satisfying the need of water supply of the City which is growing at fast pace?

While Searching for it on google, I came across this informative report published on ICRIER website. On further looking at ICRIER who was publisher of this report, I found that it stands for Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations. 
I  guess this report was created as a part of assignment, somebody really did good work. 

Report is in PDF and may not be readable on all the devices, so I am just reproducing it as it. My fear is in overhaul of website this valuable piece of research may get lost. This reports seems to be done in 2006.
Original link to PDF is here. Download Full & Original Report

Projected Population of Pune City

Raw Water Sources for Pune City


Water Supply

The city of Pune draws water from the following surface sources :-
  • Khadkawasla Dam
  • Panshet Dam
  • Warasgaon Dam
  • Temghar Dam
The Total live storage of all the 4 Dams is around 30 TMC. The Todal water supplied to the city is around 14.5 TMC (1250 MLD). Around 70% of the total requirement of the city is fulfilled throught closed conduit of 3000mm Diameter, 30% of the total requirement of the city is fulfilled through open Canal

Water Allocation

As per the agreement between Pune Munciple Corporation and State Irrigation Department, The city has been allocated 11.50 TMC (900MLD) of water Annually against which the city consumes around 14.5 TMC(1250MLD) of water, considering the growth of the city, PMC has approached the State irrigation dept for increasing the water allocation for city's drinking purposes to 19 TMC (1500 MLD).

Water Supply in the City

PMC draws from Khadakwasla dam through
  • 3000 mm MS Gravity main
  • Mutha right bank canal
  • Population city is 3.8 million
  • Daily supply to city is 1222 MLD
  • Gross per capita supply 321 lpcd
  • As per PMC data, actual supply is 866 MLD or 228 lpcd
  • Overall sewage generation can be estimated to be 728 MLD
  • Per capita supply as per norms 150 lpcd

Warje WTP

City Water Distribution System

56 Storage Reservoirs with a total storage capacity of 400 ML i.e. 30% of the daily demand. A network of around 2500 kms. The pipe sizes in the water supply system vary from 80 mm to 3000mm.

Problems in water distribution
  1. Undulated topography of the city (Sauccer shape)
  2. Unplanned distribution network
  3. Old distribution network

Scope of work for Consultant

  • Collection of information regarding water supply from water supply department 
  • Carry out hydraulic analysis of the existing water supply distribution network
  • Preparation of DMA's lead detection studies and Quantification of leakage in the system
  • Preparation of remodelling  plan to bring leakage to less than 15%.
  • Preparation of estimates for equitable water supply across the city.
  • Submission of detailed project report to financing agency.

  • Preparation of Tender Documents.
  • Completing the tendering process and selection of contractors for execution of works. 
  • Supervision of works as project management consultants. 
  • Carryout public awareness camps. 
  • Supervise the works as consultants during the operation and maintenance period of the contractor.  
  • Train the engineers from PMC for network analysis, lead detection SCADA etc. 


Progress of work in Equitable Water Supply Project

  • Collection of Information regarding water supply from water supply dept

  • Carry out hydraulic analysis of all the water supply zones of the existing water supply distribution network
  • Preparation of DMA's for the city (Total 327 DMA's) 
  • Finalisation of report regarding 100% meterisation across the city
  • Finalisation of scope of work for 5 DMA's which are to be taken up for implementation as pilot study shortly.
  • Preparation of detailed project report as per guidelines of JNNURM is in progress

Ambitious Ongoing Projects for Future

  • Equitable water supply scheme for the city
  • Laying closed conduit of 2500 mm diameter from khadakwasla Dam to parvati water works to avoid uptake from open canal
  • Construction of 200 MLD water treatment plant at warje water works.
  • laying closed conduit of 1600 mm diameter from Khadakwasla  dam to Warje Water works. 
  • Construction of 5 service reservoires

Projects in Pipeline

  • Construction of 500 MLD capacity WTP at Parvati Water
  • Construction of 300 MLD capacity WTP at Cantonment
  • Construction of 250 MLD capacity WTP Vadgaon
  • Implementation of Equitable water supply scheme
  • Construction of Jackwell on the upstream of Khadakwasla dam
  • Construction of tunnel for conveying water from parvati water works to Cantonment water works.
  • Development of new source at bhama-askhed, water treatment plant of 200 MLD capacity, construction of new reservoirs, development of distribution system etc. 

Facts about Water Supply and Sewage Generation in Pune City


Objective of the assignment

    1. To design a project to collect and treat 100% sewage generated in the city of Pune  

    2. To present the project under NRCD to seek the funding.



    Key problems for ensuring 100% collection and treatment of sewage  

    • High rate of water supply resulting in higher sewage flows
    • Inadequate / old conveyance or transmission lines causing sewage to flow in Nallas
    • Problems with the collection system (unconnected areas, leaking main lines etc)
    • Treatment capacity some existing plants inefficient
    • Space availability at the right locations for sewage treatment
    • Sewage flow Insufficients from upstream outskirts of the city 

 Steps Involved

  • Prepare base map and define drainage districts
  • Collection of data for existing water supply, sewage network and treatment capacity
  • Carryout detailed ward-wise population projections
  • Estimation of drainage district-wise sewage flows
  • Analyse gaps in collection system (conveyance mains and transmission mains)
  • Analyse gaps in treatment capacity
  • Design for new infrastructure and improvements
  • Cost estimation 


  • Collection system in Balewadi area ( 43Km)
  • Trunk mains & Conveyance mains (12Nos, 46.03Km)
  • STP’s for 100% treatment of sewage generated by city up to year 2044
  • (Financial provision for 2024) – 10 STP’s, 383MLD
  • Up-gradation of 2 Intermediate Pumping stations
  • Capacity Building


  1. PMC has made necessary modificatino in the building control rules and has made it mandatory for all housing schemes to have STPs & reuse the treated sewage for flushing, gardening etc.
  2. PMC had started implementing a scheme of recycling 500 MLD treated sewage for irrigation 
  3. PMC has made it mandatory to implement rain water harvesting in all new upcoming housing schemes.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Who will vote for UPA in 2014?

Why shouldn't these people vote for UPA in 2014?

1) people who have bought properties/multiple flats in around 2004-2008. Now property prices has becomealmost 4x to 20x. Turning many of these guys into crorepaties. Similar rise in rates didn't happen in the past.and whole value chain consisting of brokers, banks agents, bankers got benefitted from this.
2) people who got benefitted from many new kits and iims. Although currently these new kits doesn't have facilities and faculties. But w damn care for all this and end of day and life what matters is brand IIT and IIM. One more stamp which provides extra value in job market, shadi market.
3) land owners in various remote regions where land values are suddenly 100x ed. Turning many farmers in labourers.
4) Execs who became rich just due to policies and not due to their hard work.

I guess more such categories would exists, feel free to add those in comments.

I don't know what is the share do they form in overall voters, they should and will certainly vote for UPA.

Shared from Google Keep

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

Idea - Multiple Recruiter Dealing and Discovery Platform

While running a startup, you deal with lots of interesting problems. Recruitment is one of the interesting and toughest problem to solve. My guess is Startups are not alone facing this issue, they have company of others as Hiring an appropriate candidate which matches employers expectations is one of the biggest challenge for any enterprise, be it a startup or established enterprise.

A funny analogy, There is a popular belief that It is tough for guys who are in startups to get married but its half truth. If you open your eyes and sharpen your ears, you see (and hear all the gossips) that getting married is one of the toughest problem current generation (of marriageable age) has been facing,  It doesn't depend on whether you are in startup or your are earning crores in a big company. It nonetheless exists, for anybody having achieved or not achieved anything in life and having some expectations or not.  
Regular expression of Match Making for marriage won't find a correct or suitable match easily - Me
Same is true for Recruiting, Recruiting is another kind of hunting, every company and every candidate thinks they are special, they need special treatment. so in turn, making it difficult for each other. Hunting and Finding Correct Candidates is difficult ballgame altogether. - NP Problem.

Jokes Apart, I guess every problem has some solution if parties involved either takes a step forward. 

Here is short description of Problem  :-
1) Any company who wants to  recruit for certain position is highly dependent on external recruiters, specially companies who don't have in-house HR.
2) Single recruitment consultancy may not be enough and recruitment consultancies don't want to work with companies who has tie ups with multiple recruiters. #catch22
3) Its very difficult to find correct recruiter who has expertize and experience in gauging candidate before it was presented to employers #HuntTheHunters
4) Many recruiters are ladies who may take job off due to marriage and can work alone due to prior experience but doesn't have easy way to get back to work and utilize their skills.
I Propose (a Toast here :) ) solution :-
1) A platform where recruiters can enlist themselves and get the work. Similar to freelancer programmers websites
2) Recruiters enlist themselves and choose job profiles for which they can do recruiting or have expertize and network.
3) A company interested in hiring for some position will log on to this portal and choose recruiters who are claiming expertize.
4) Company can choose more than one recruiter, while recruiter will see how many other recruiters are assigned with hunting task.
5) Recruiter on finding candidate will submit name of candidate to check if its already proposed by any other recruiter if not, he will submit his candidate for job.
6) Company will see list of candidates with recruiter name.
7) Platform can do auto-grading of recruiter and employer according to selections or number of relevant candidate proposed by recruiter.
8) On this platform, anyone who want to do freelancing can enlist themselves and get the work.

If you are recruiter or employer, Let me know what do you think about this? Have I figured out correct problem?

Shared from Google Keep

Monday, November 04, 2013

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

If Startup Is A Tree...

Startup - A Tree

If you are an entrepreneur, Haven’t you wondered ever about the Idea that building a startup is like growing a tree. If you neither have an experience of growing a tree or building a startup, but still you can read this stuff out of curiosity. Analogy looks interesting with lots of characters and processes are similar in start up and tree cultivation.

As tree needs a sapling or a seed to start growing in some land and a caretaker to protect it and give it a necessary nutrients like water, fertilizer to grow. The Startup needs an idea and a capable team to play caretaker role and investors money and team’s blood and sweat acts a fertilizer.As per one’s expectations of fruits or flowers, one would choose seeds. Also one need to have people with right skills who can help in growing a tree or number of trees.

What role customer does fits-in for this analogy?

Imaginatively Customers are like a segment of soil which tree roots clung to. They try to exchange as much nutrient from soil also help soil from heavy rains. Similarly for startup, you need to have customers to grow your business. Roots are like customer relationships, more stable and deeper your relationships, better stability and bigger the tree you would have. Your business can in turn provide customers something valuable which will help them meaningfully in something.

Though Like entrepreneur, a tree owner always want to have big tree, but many times seed doesn’t tell you what the tree it will grow. You can’t guess from its size or color. if you are really expert you will spot the correct seeds. Then you will need to land with correct type of soil, else tree won’t grow. Similarly however good idea you have ifv market is not receptible, your baby may not grow to be a superstar.

Building startup and growing it into stable business machine has similar challenges.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Are CSR groups solving correct problems?

Social corporate responsibility
1) in pune's teschforseva conference , I was amazed to know abt various initiatives taken under CSR. And will to do more work by various CSR reps.

2) I was wondering if it is  real? Is there way to measure how CSR is touching lives of people who are really away from all great things happening in India - supposed shining india?
3) There are still multitudes of social problems to solve. How does CSR of some company identifies correct audience and picks up suitable problem.

4) is there data available to make these choices?
5) how to involve youth into this?
6) can we build an information system to highlight  problems which are being solved and where efforts would be mostly needed?
7) what common problems are need to get solved? What efforts are put up by government to solve them.
8) what are the primary problems solved by these companies?
9) I also wonder various companies, specifically manufacturing, which are doing CSR, are they treating own employees well? Are they properly paid and not to make worked in non-human conditions or even by their vendors.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Onion - price fluctuation analysis - Gujrat Vs Maharashtra - Who are in Better shape

As per 18th April news in ToI & business standards about Onion price rise in Maha & Gujrat. See who use to get more and will get more due to environmental.

In the district APMCs, the average wholesale onion prices, which were in the range of Rs 575 to Rs 801 a quintal on April 10, rose to Rs 750-Rs 1,011 on Thursday. In the retail market, good quality onions were sold in the range of Rs 12 to 15 a kg. 

My Analysis: This means, farmer were getting 5.75 rs to 8 rs per kg. now they will get 7.5 to 10 per kg in Maharashtra


Industry insiders say hailstorm and unseasonal rainfall across many parts of India have damaged significant amount of crop. As a result, prices of best quality onion has risen from Rs 75 -100 per 20 kg to Rs 125-150 per 20 kg at Mahuva market in Gujarat. Average price has stood between Rs 60-120 per 20 kg.

My Analysis: This means, farmer were getting 3.75 rs to 5 rs per kg. now they will get 5.25 to 6 per kg.


Original -

Some facts
1) Onions are the second-most consumed vegetable in India, after potatoes.
2) Onions can be stored for long without much expense.
3)  Maharashtra and Karnataka accounts for the half onion market. e.g. in   2011-12, Out of 15.8 million tons of onion produced in India, 32% came from Maha and 17% from karnataka.
4) In Maharashtra, most of the onion come from the Pune-Nashik belt..
5) Both states harvest onions in Winter, Mandi's in Bangalore get onion between sept and jan while in Maharashtra, between dec and february.
6) Most of the production is done by small farmers.
7) These farmers sell after harvest at low price to traders.
8) Traders sell across india at high price. Referring to point 2 , traders have storages to keep purchases for longer time. (Hoarding)
9) Traders have credit link with Farmers which creates space for exploitation.
10) Trading business has monopolistic tendencies, for historical and financial reasons, large storage capacities for onion have remained with private traders and that too in nashik belt.
11)who are Onion Traders?
    a) Commision agent-cum-wholesalers
    b) forwarders-cum-store owners
    c) transport or railway agent
12) Market is imperfect with very few buyers (traders) and many sellers (farmers)            
13) India exported 3 lakh tonnes of onion this year between January and may.
14) Whats reason behind export: if the country abruptly stops exports, it will not be seen as a reliable supplied in international markets.

1) Other states like Punjab, IP, Assam and Chattisgard should start growing onions.
2) We need to have onion warehouses, who avoids supply-demand manipulations.

Small wonder that the onion prices have been an important political issue: They were the decisive factor in the 1998 state elections in Delhi and Rajasthan, and were responsible for bringing down the central government in 1980.

Reference: Article in Economic Times , Dated 1st Oct 2013

journey - quotes

"I think that wherever your journey takes you, there are new gods waiting there, with divine patience -- and laughter."
--Susan M. Watkins

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

ReInvent the Toilet Challenge - India [RTTC-India]

Here is the list of winner candidates from 2012. Click Here

Republishing this from Announcement from Today's Economic Times
Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC), A Government of India Enterprise (Section-25, Not-for Profir Company) is announcing the Second Grand Challenges India Funding Opportunity with Support from department of Biotechnology(DBT), Ministry of Science and Technology, Govt of India and Bill &Melinda Gates Foundation (MBGF), This collaboration seeks to support the development of innovation sanitation technologies, products and services under the Reinvent the Toilet Challenge India(RTTC-India)

Solving the sanitation challenge in India requires leading edge innovations deployable across diverse landscapes. UNICEF report on India Sanitation showed that poor sanitation is responsible for 62 million children under-5 being stunted and no reaching their full physical or mental potential. Sustainable solutions supporting the entire value chain of sanitation from collection till treatment are important. The overall goal of the RTC-India is to find sustainable sanitation solutions for processing was that include controlling the environmental contaminations, improving users acceptance and experience, ease of maintenance and operation in resource poor settings.

Under the Grand Challenges India Intitiative, we are looking for
  • Conceptualizing novel ways to process human waste, design and field-test prototypes having stand-alone, self-contained practical sanitation modules.
  • Innovative technologies incorporating new system and modification of existing toilet solutions that creat affordable services and have on-site proessing with no further transport requirement
  • Creating completely new systems for train-cars that intake bodily wastes directly and process them onboard with no further transaport of hazardous waste from the train.
  • Neighbourhood level systems that swiftly dispose of bodily wastes and faecal sludge collected from local pot latrines and septic tanks.
  • Preference shall be given to proposals catering for end-end-end approached (prototypes and processing that resposon to all aspects of the challenge

 Who Can Apply
 We seek expression of interest under the RTTC-India from :
  • Indian researchers, Innovators, Entrepreneurs
  • Indian entities such as Academia, Research Institutes, Medical Institutes, Industries, Not-for-profit Organizations
Indian led projects will be supported but we would encourage partnerships with researchers in other countries, especially where the opportunity exists to build on established collaboration or developing consortium 

How to Apply:
Interested applicants can submit a letter of Intent (LoI) online at www.birac.nic.in latest by November 15, 2013. For more details you can contact, Dr. Shilpi Gupta, Manager Technical (Discovery and Product Development) BIRAC
Email: sgupta.birac[at]nic.in, swarup[at]dbt.nic.in

Detailed guidelines for RFP, visit www.birac.nic.in

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Car Pooling As a Startup Idea - Doesnt Make Sense to Me!

Recently I attended a demo session at in50Hrs in Thoughtworks Office Pune. In50hrs is India's premier Idea to prototype Platform. You can read more about it here : http://www.in50hrs.com/

They arrange events across india where, group of entrepreneurs/wannabes try to build a product from Idea to Proto in 50 hrs. Its Interesting Concept and event.

One group demo'ed Car pooling Mobile application where a person who is interested in car pooling can search for cars using GPS. They even integrated Voice search to make it funky.
It was nicely done thing! Great work by people involved in it!

But Somehow, I see Carpooling as overhyped concept.

I read many articles in business newspaper about Car pooling applications in the past. I talked with few of entrepreneurs who are chasing this crazy Idea, but was not satisfied with their answers.

Who, Why, For What need this thing?

- Lets think from Car owners perspective,
   Why does anybody buys car in  India?
   - It provides Big Social Status
   - It provides means to Long, Private Family Travel.
  -  It will assist you in shopping when you do heavy grocery shopping
  -  They can reach to office on time and in good condition, without breaking finely pressed clothes.

He might not have big concern in saving money by car pooling.

Would he be looking for sponsoring his fuel expenses using Car Pooling? None of Car pooling folks talk or present ideas to Car Owner promising them Free Fuel.

Car pooling may attribute to few cents saving his fuel cost at behest of him playing driver's role.

If He is Socially responsible, He would love to help people waiting on the roads.

But overall OptIn from Car Owners in large scale looks distant possibility. Car pooling with Friends is okay but with unknowns, I doubt.

2) From Car Poolers perspective :
    - They want comfortable, AC travel
    - They dont want to chase Auto's
    - They want to travel by Buses, Wait for it
    - Many can not afford buying Car and Car Parking.
    - Many can afford buying a car but cannot afford fuel for daily travel.

Safe, Secure, Reliable Transport is Need of Hour, But Car pooling alone cant be an answer.

Instead of Investing in Carpooling by creating certain Websites or Mobile Apps.
We need much bigger, Heavy investment in Improving Bus Transportation and Bus Routing Mechanisms. We need Macro solutions to our Transportation problem and not micro solution which will serve to fewer audience. People should not hate bus travels. They are, at end of day, human beings only.

In cities like Mumbai, Hyderabad, People do travel with Buses comfortably. They have multi-tier of buses as per classes. People who can pay higher, will get more comfort. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Copy/Paste Is Easy? Not Really!

Can anyone who uses Computers can live without Copy/Paste ( Ctrl-C & Ctrl-V)?

Ctrl, C & V buttons takes away lots of loads from all the keyboard buttons and make your keyboards live longer.

These three buttons would have saved billion years of typing efforts of billion users all over the world.

So Why this post?
In one of our product which uses HTML/JS, we want to have a button to let person copy the content of some div and paste it on some other window.

But there are not JS/HTML provided way to do this. Only browser takes care of this is Unfortunately the most cursed browser, IE.

 I dont know why rest of the browsers have ignored this functionality.

 It is not that you cannot implement it, there is savior in ZeroClipboard which helps you implement copy paste in any browser. But it uses flash/swf the adobe solution. I fear if it will work at all on tablets as most of the phones/tablets havent given programmatic facility to copy paste.

It works perfectly with ZeroClipBoards, We created small demo to test this lib.

If browsers provide such a functionality in built, It will save a atleast a million horse power of energy of people who are using mouse or long press to select, copy and paste some content.

I dont know how bit.ly is doing it but I guess they must be using flash support to enable on button copy paste.

Adding Twitter Follow Button on Blogger

Today I was trying to add Twitter followup button on Blogger. Somehow I got tricked in to thing that I can only add Extra widget through URL only. While Twitter provides Javascript for adding Followup button.  I wasted around  ~30 minutes on this. I noticed that there is much simpler option to add Twitter followup button on Your blogger.

I am giving here step by step process to add followup button on your blogger and save your precious 30 minutes.

Part 1:

1) Log In to Twitter:

2) Create Button Script on Twitter

3) Copy Twitter JS

Part 2:

1) Log in to Blogger.com

2) Go to Layout

3) Click on Add Widget

4) You will see following Popup

5) Scroll Down, You will need to select HTML/Javascript option

6)  Configure HTML/Javascript

7)  Add Title as Twitter, Copy paste JS script from Part 1 in to content box.

8) Save the JS
9) On Template Page, Save the Arrangement.

10) You will see Twitter followup button on RIght Sidebar

Monday, September 16, 2013

Task Management using Check List - Can it be Improved?

How do you manage your tasks?

The most popular way of doing task management is Lists.
One fine day, You sit on your desk and sees that there are lots of things in your mind which you think need to be worked upon.

What you do?
If you have a notebook. You will list down all the tasks in your notebook. You mark up the priority and tick each you task as a tiger in you efficiently finishes each of tasks.

   Now come the Computers, Workplace where your tasks are not your tasks, Tasks has other stake holders, they need to know what you are doing, when you are doing, it help your bosses to measure you, it helps your co-workers to manage their own tasks.

  You will find many popular tools which uses HTML Select boxes for Task Management lists.  You can do it online on Gmail, on Macbook. Some websites like Asana has created fullblown product based on Task List Management.

I use Confluence for my Product Managment and Use Confluence provided Task lists for Managing various To Dos.

It looks this :

I see its incomplete. It doesnt cater some important need to task management.
Current way of things, As it uses paradigm from HTML world - Checkbox, you can have only two states. Checked or UnChecked.

Checked - Task Done
UnChecked - Task Not Done

Now there is Time dimension which is most important in any task Management, is missing here.

In above list, If I starts working ing Hiring recruitment consultant, I cant mark it as anything to indicate that I am working on it.

Current Workaround for me is to add #tags  at end or start of Task description but it doesnt suffice.

I need to have some way to mark checkbox with intermediate steps.

Somebody like Asana who is betting whole thing on checkbox way of task management can do something about it. Or even company like apple who believe in making things intuitive, they have started with providing inbuilt solution with Checkboxes. They can definitely bring some minimalistic innovation.

It would be difficult but not impossible for Asana. As Asana is an SAAS solution, it uses in existing Checkbox tag of HTML. They can use different Images or lobby for new Checkbox with HTML Standards group.

Hope someBudding entreprenuer takes honour in disrupting this tiny but vary effective, existing Task management solution.

My Experience : How to Give a Elevator Pitch?

I am first time entrepreneur so dont go by my word, but here is my experience.

In Month of June'13, I visited Dubai for Mobile Apps conference. There I got a chance to interact with various dubai based Startup Accelerators. Event organizers also gave us opportunity to give elevator Pitch.

My Co-founder Gold and I took this opportunity to deliver our First Elevator Pitch in front of audience. It was small gathering with Reps from Accelerators playing role of investors. 

Gold has prepared small pitch, It contained lots of industry stats for Mobile Usage. We started with it, I explained about what we are doing as protos.

We got following feedback from Investors abour Elevator pitch.
  1.  Self Intro - We missed it completely.
  2. Explain Problem - We didn't pin down on direct problems
  3. Explain the solution - We directly jumped on Solution Aspects
  4. Leave other things for Q&A - 

Overall we got good feedback about our Ideas, They liked our Idea.

Now Here is details about Whats is Elevator Pitch?  I jotted down a document to understand more about elevator pitch when I heard about it first time in Oct 2012. 

Disclaimer: I have picked following thing from the internet. I have tweaked it a bit.

What is an "Elevator Pitch"?
It's small, concise and effective pitch about your business, you give to anyone whom you meet in elevator.

An "Elevator Pitch" is a concise, carefully planned, and well-practiced description about your company that your mother should be able to understand in the time it would take to ride up an elevator.

What an "Elevator Pitch" is not
It is not a "sales pitch."  Don't get caught up in using the entire pitch to tell the Investor how great your product or service is.  The Investor is "buying" the business, not the product.  Tell him/her how you will run the business.

How to Create An Elevator Pitch?
You will need to answer following questions to create pitch.

1) What is your product or service?

Briefly describe what it is you sell.  Do not go into excruciating detail.  
2) Who is your market?What industry is it?
How large of a market do they represent?
3) What is your revenue model?how do you expect to make money?  
  Briefly discuss who you are selling the product or service to.
4) Who is behind the company?
  "Bet on the jockey, not the horse" is a familiar saying among Investors. Tell them a little about you and your team's background and achievements. If you have a strong advisory board, tell them who they are and what they have accomplished
5) Who is your competition?
Don't have any?  Think again.  Briefly discuss who they are and what they have accomplished.  Successful competition is an advantage-they are proof your business model and/or concept work.
6) What is your competitive advantage?
Simply being in an industry with successful competitors is not enough. You need to effectively communicate how your company is different and why you have an advantage over the competition.  A better distribution channel?  Key partners?  Proprietary technology?

What your "Elevator Pitch" must contain:
A "hook" Open your pitch by getting the Investor's attention with a "hook."  A statement or question that piques their interest to want to hear more.
About 150-225 words Your pitch should go no longer than 60 seconds.
Passion Investors expect energy and dedication from entrepreneurs.
A request At the end of your pitch, you must ask for something.  Do you want their business card, to schedule a full presentation, to ask for a referral?